March 27, 2008

Reaction and Romanticism

I mentioned before Cormac McCarthy. Everyone has their own opinion on why people keep reading him, but I categorize his writing as anti-Western in genre. Sort of like Clint Eastwood in film--Mystic River, Unforgiven, etc. You take the romance of the West and turn it on its head and see how the audience reacts.

I think it's obvious from this Oscar season that the genre is alive and well, as much as the true Western was in the old days.

The Romance of the West has been on my mind lately because I keep thinking back to how Governor Chiles read Louis L'Amour books in the Mansion in his spare time. And the novels of Horatio Hornblower. Light stuff. When somebody reads that sort of thing late in life, I think you have to imagine the seeds of that being sown quite early.

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